How to send contracts to clients for electronic signature (for free!)

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You just finished your intro call with a new client. They want you to send over an invoice and a contract for a quick esignature. You agree, and once you hang up, the panic sets in. "How do I do that??"

A few years ago, as a new freelancer, I had this exact experience.

When I first got started, I made the grave error of working without contracts. (Don't do this.)

So when I decided to get serious, I found myself scrambling at the last minute, after a client call, trying to figure out how to send one electronically. 

Here are my favorite tools for getting esignatures from clients:

(And they're all free!)

1. HelloSign

If you use this link to sign up for HelloSign, you & I will each get 1 extra free doc!

The interface on this one is just so pretty. I love it! It looks very professional, and the ease of use in unmatched - both on my side, and for my clients. It includes an audit log, which tracks all opens and logs IP addresses. You get 3 free signs per month with this one. 

2. PandaDoc 

*Oct '17 update: Pandadoc no longer offers a free plan. If you were already using, you've been grandfathered in, they told me.

The interface on this one is definitely not as simple to use, but nonetheless - this is the tool I'm using more often these days. There's 2 reasons for that. First, you get 5 free signs each month. Second you're able to upload templates on the free version. (This is a paid feature on HelloSign.) The template makes client onboarding so much quicker. 

3. Bonsai

Bonsai is nice because it has sample contracts built into the system, and you can attach invoices. There's no audit log on this one, so that's why it's not my first choice. But it's a great back up to have in case you run out of free signs on your other tools. (You get unlimited signs each month on this one!)

 

+ Dubsado (Paid option)

Dubsado is  the only paid option on this list, but it's such a cool tool I really thought I should include it. It's a full service CRM, with more than just e-signing for contracts available. You can send invoices, build automated workflows, and embed forms on your site.

A contract is way too important to not be sending out. Be sure to check out these tools and pick the best one for you! 

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